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Origins of the Cold War


Origins of the Cold War Heart of the rivalry between the US and the Soviet Union was a fundamental difference in the ways the great powers envisioned the postwar world – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Origins of the Cold War

Origins of the Cold War
  • Heart of the rivalry between the US and the
    Soviet Union was a fundamental difference in the
    ways the great powers envisioned the postwar

Origins of the Cold War
  • Vision outlined by Atlantic Charter world in
    which nations abandoned their traditional beliefs
    in military alliances and spheres of influence,
    governed their relations with one another through
    democratic processes, relied on an international
    organization to serve as a arbiter of disputes
    and protector of every nations right of
    self-determination (appealed to FDR, Churchill
    was uneasy about it)

Origins of the Cold War
  • Vision of the Soviet Union create secure sphere
    for itself in Central and Eastern Europe as
    protection against possible future aggression
    from the West, powers would control areas of
    strategic interest, similar to traditional
    European balance of power diplomacy (Stalin and
    Churchill were ok with this)

Origins of the Cold War
  • Casablanca Conference (January 1943) FDR and
    Churchill met to discuss the Allied war strategy,
    Stalin did not attend although invited, they
    announced that they would accept nothing less
    than the unconditional surrender of the Axis
    indicating that they would not negotiate a
    separate peace with Hitler and leave the Soviets
    fighting alone, but could not accept Stalins
    demand for the immediate opening of a second
    front in Europe

Origins of the Cold War
  • Tehran Conference (November 1943) German advance
    against Russia had ended thus eliminating FDRs
    largest bargaining chip Russias need for US
    assistance, Roosevelt and Stalin established a
    cordial personal relationship.

Origins of the Cold War
  • Stalin agreed to an American request that Soviet
    Union enter the war in the Pacific, in return
    Anglo-American second front would be established
    within 6 months, question of the future
    government of Poland (London or Lublin) was left

Origins of the Cold War
  • Yalta Conference (February 1945) in return for
    Stalin's renewed promise to enter the Pacific
    war, Roosevelt agreed that the Soviet Union
    should receive some territory in the Pacific that
    Russia had lost to Japan in the 1904
    Russo-Japanese War.

Origins of the Cold War
  • They also agreed on the United Nations which
    would contain a General Assembly, and a Security
    Council with permanent representatives of the 5
    major powers (US, Britain, France, Soviet Union,
    China), each with veto power

Origins of the Cold War
  • Disagreement remained about the postwar Polish
    government, Stalin installed a government
    composed of pro-Communist Lublin Poles, Roosevelt
    and Churchill wanted the pro-Western London Poles
    allowed a place in the Warsaw regime, Stalin
    reluctantly consented to hold free and
    unfettered elections at an unspecified future

Origins of the Cold War
  • Disagreement also existed over Germany, FDR
    wanted a reconstructed and reunited Germany,
    Stalin wanted reparations and a dismemberment of
    Germany, the US, France, Great Britain and Soviet
    Union would each control its own zone of
    occupation in Germany - decided based on position
    of troops already in Germany, and Berlin would be
    divided into 4 sectors

Origins of the Cold War
  • The Yalta Accords were a set of loose principles
    that sidestepped most difficult questions, the
    Soviet Union moved systematically to establish
    pro-Communist governments in Central and Eastern
    European nations and Stalin refused to hold
    elections in Poland that FDR believed that he had
    been promised

Origins of the Cold War
  • On April 12, 1945 FDR suffered a massive stroke
    and died in Warm Springs, GA

The Collapse of Peace
  • Truman had almost no familiarity with
    international issues, he sided with those who
    considered the Soviet Union fundamentally
    untrustworthy Truman viewed Stalin with
    suspicion and even loathing, decided on a Get
    Tough policy with the USSR

The Collapse of Peace
  • Truman met with Soviet Foreign Minister Molotov
    on April 23, 1945 and chastised him for
    violations of the Yalta accords, Truman
    recognized that with the Soviet army occupying
    Poland and most of Central and Eastern Europe,
    his leverage was limited, Truman recognized the
    Warsaw government in Poland, hoping non-communist
    forces might expand their influence (not until

The Collapse of Peace
  • At Potsdam (July 1945) Truman reluctantly
    accepted adjustments to the Polish-German border
    that Stalin had long demanded, but refused to
    permit Russians to claim any reparations from the
    Allied zones of Germany effectively ensuring that
    Germany would remain divided

The Collapse of Peace
  • The Chinese government of Chiang Kai-shek was
    corrupt and incompetent with feeble popular
    support, since 1927 his nationalist government
    had been engaged in a rivalry with the communist
    armies of Mao Zedong, the US continued to support
    Chiang when the rivalry erupted into the Chinese
    civil war by continuing to pump money and weapons
    to Chiang, but Truman was unwilling to intervene
    militarily to save Chiang, China fell to Mao and
    his communists in 1949

The Collapse of Peace
  • The US government began to look for an
    alternative to China to be a strong, pro-US force
    in Asia, the US lifted all restrictions on
    industrial development in Japan and encouraged
    rapid economic growth, accepting a divided world
    (US v. USSR)

The Collapse of Peace
  • A new US policy was developing as an alternative
    to the Atlantic Charter, Containment stated that
    rather than attempting to create a unified "open"
    world, the US and its allies would work to
    contain the threat of further Soviet expansion

The Collapse of Peace
  • In 1946, in Turkey Stalin was attempting to win
    control over the vital sea lanes to the
    Mediterranean, and in Greece communist forces
    were threatening the pro-western government and
    the British announced that they could no longer
    provide assistance, faced with these challenges
    Truman decided to enunciate a firm new policy

The Collapse of Peace
  • George F. Kennan warned shortly after WWII that
    in the Soviet Union the United States faced a
    political force committed fanatically to the to
    the belief that with the US there can be no
    permanent modus vivendi and that the only answer
    was a long-term, patient but firm and vigilant
    containment of Russian expansive tendencies

The Collapse of Peace
  • On March 12, 1947 Truman announced the Truman
    Doctrine before Congress I believe that it must
    be the policy of the United States to support
    free people who are resisting attempted
    subjugation by armed minorities or outside
    pressures and asked Congress for 400 million,
    part of which would help the governments of
    Greece and Turkey, the Truman Doctrine would
    survive for the more than 40 years

The Collapse of Peace
  • George F. Kennan would become critical of the US
    governments sweeping view of containment, he
    felt the US needed to define their vital
    interests more narrowly and to focus their
    defensive efforts on nations of direct strategic
    importance to them such as Europe and Japan

The Collapse of Peace
  • Motives for aid in economic reconstruction of
    Western Europe humanitarian concern for the
    people of Europe, a fear that Europe would remain
    an economic drain on the US if it could not
    rebuild and feed itself, a desire for strong
    European markets for US goods, above all if the
    US did not strengthen pro-western governments in
    Europe they might fall to growing domestic
    communist parties

The Collapse of Peace
  • The Marshall Plan was announced in June 1947, the
    US would provide economic assistance to all
    European nations, including Soviet Union, that
    would join in drafting a program for recovery
    however Russia and Eastern European satellites
    refused to participate, 16 European nations
    eagerly agreed to participate.

Dividing Europe After World War II
The Collapse of Peace
  • Whatever domestic opposition there was in the US
    disappeared after a communist coup in
    Czechoslovakia in February of 1948, in April 1948
    the Congress approved the creation of the
    Economic Cooperation Administration which would
    administer the Marshall Plan, over 12 billion in
    aid was given to Europe, resulting in a
    substantial economic revival, by the end of 1950
    industrial production in Europe was up 64

The Collapse of Peace
  • The US fully accepted the containment policy by
    instituting a series of policies designed to
    maintain American military power at near wartime
    levels, in 1948 Congress approved a new military
    draft and revived the Selective Service System,
    the US began to focus on atomic research, the
    Atomic Energy Commission was established in 1946,
    oversaw nuclear research, and in 1950 Truman
    approved the development of a new hydrogen bomb
    that would be more powerful than the bombs the US
    had used in 1945

The Collapse of Peace
  • The National Security Act of 1947 reshaped the
    nations major military and diplomatic
    institutions, created a new Department of Defense
    that would oversee all branches of the armed
    service the National Security Council (operating
    out of the White House) would govern foreign and
    military policy.

The Collapse of Peace
  • The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) would be
    responsible for collecting information info
    through both open and covert methods and engage
    in political and military operations on behalf of
    American goals, this gave the president expanded
    powers with which to pursue the nations
    international goals

The Collapse of Peace
  • Convinced that a reconstructed Germany was
    essential to the hopes of the West, Truman
    reached an agreement with Britain and France to
    merge the 3 western zones of occupation into a
    new West German Republic (this would also include
    Berlin well inside the Soviet zone), Stalin
    responded on June 24, 1948 by imposing a tight
    blockade around the western sectors of Berlin

The Collapse of Peace
  • Truman was unwilling to risk war through a
    military challenge to the blockade instead
    ordered a massive airlift to supply the city with
    food, fuel and needed goods, the airlift lasted
    for more than 10 months and transported 2.5
    million tons of material into Berlin keeping more
    than 2 million people alive.

The Collapse of Peace
  • Transformed West Berlin into a symbol of the
    Wests resolve to resist communist expansion, in
    the Spring of 1949 Stalin lifted the ineffective
    blockade and Germany was divided into the Federal
    Republic in the west and the Democratic Republic
    in the east

The Collapse of Peace
  • North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) was an
    alliance between the US and the countries of
    Europe created on April 4, 1949, it declared that
    an armed attack against one member would be
    considered an attack against all

The Collapse of Peace
  • The Soviet Union created an alliance with the
    communist governments in Eastern Europe,
    formalized as the Warsaw Pact in 1955

The Collapse of Peace
  • In September 1949 the Soviet Union successfully
    exploded its first atomic weapon years earlier
    then predicted, this shocked and scared many
    Americans as did the collapse of Chiang
    Kai-sheiks nationalist government in China (they
    fled to Formosa Taiwan) leading to a communist
    government in China that many Americans
    considered to be an extension of the Soviet Union

The Collapse of Peace
  • National Security Council report issued in 1950
    (NSC-68), outlined a shift in the American
    position sharing the burden of containment with
    its allies, NSC-68 argued that the US could no
    longer rely on other nations to take the
    initiative in resisting communism.

The Collapse of Peace
  • America must itself move to stop communist
    expansion virtually anywhere it occurred
    regardless of the intrinsic strategic or economic
    value of the lands in question, taking firm and
    active leadership of the noncommunist world,
    NSC-68 called for a major expansion of American
    military power with a defense budget almost 4
    times larger than the previously projected figure

American Society and Politics after the War
  • No general economic collapse after the war
    government spending dropped but increased
    consumer demand soon compensated, ready to spend
    saved wages, a 6 billion dollar tax cut pumped
    additional money into general circulation.

American Society and Politics after the War
  • The Servicemans Readjustment Act of 1944 (the GI
    Bill of Rights) provided economic and educational
    assistance to veterans increasing spending
    further, this contributed to massive inflation
    problems (14 15 annually), in the summer of
    1946 Truman vetoed price controls (in the
    extension of the Office of Price Administration
    bill) and inflation soared 25 before he relented
    and signed a bill similar to the one he vetoed.

American Society and Politics after the War
  • There was sharp rise in labor unrest after WWII,
    by the end of 1945 there were major strikes in
    the automobile, electrical, and steel industries,
    driven in part by the impact of inflation, in
    April 1946, John L. Lewis led the United Mine
    Workers out on strike and shut down the coal
    fields for 40 days, fear that without the vital
    coal supplies the entire nation might grind to a
    halt, Truman finally forced the miners to return
    to work by ordering government seizure of the

American Society and Politics
  • He pressured mine owners to grant union most of
    its demands, almost simultaneously the nations
    railroads were shut down by two major unions
    going out on strike at the same time, Truman
    threatened to use the Army to run the trains and
    the workers returned after only a few days

American Society and Politics after the War
  • With vets returning home looking for job
    employers tended to push minorities out of the
    plants, 80 of the workers wanted to continue
    working, postwar inflation, pressure to meet
    rising expectation of high-consumption society,
    rising divorce rate created among women a high
    demand for paid jobs - moved into the service

American Society and Politics after the War
  • Trumans Fair Deal called for an expansion of
    Social Security benefits, the raising of the
    legal minimum wage from 40 to 65 cents an hour, a
    program to ensure full employment through
    aggressive use of federal spending and
    investment, permanent Fair Employment Practices

American Society and Politics after the War
  • Public housing and slum clearance, long-range
    environmental and public works planning,
    government promotion of research, federal aid to
    funding for the St. Lawrence Seaway, the
    nationalization of atomic energy, and national
    health insurance my assumption of the office
    of President in my own right

American Society and Politics after the War
  • Conservatism seemed to be intensifying and the
    Republican party won both houses of Congress in
    the 1946 elections using the slogan Had
    Enough?, Truman grudgingly moved to lift the
    remaining wage and price controls, Republicans
    began to reduce government spending, deregulate
    the economy, and take a meat-axe to government

American Society and Politics after the War
  • Refused to appropriate funds to aid education,
    refused to increase social security, refused to
    support reclamation and power projects in the
    West, defeated a proposal to raise minimum wage,
    passed tax cuts for high income families, We
    have got to break with the corrupting idea that
    we can legislate prosperity, legislate equality,
    legislate opportunity.

American Society and Politics after the War
  • The Taft-Hartley Act (Labor-Management Relations
    Act of 1947) made the closed shop (no one can be
    hired without first being a member of a union)
    illegal, continued to permit the creation of
    union shops (in which workers have to join the
    union once hired) but permitted states to pass
    right-to-work laws prohibiting even that.

American Society and Politics after the War
  • The act empowered the president to call for a
    "cooling-off' period before a strike by issuing
    an injunction against any work stoppage that
    endangered national safety or health, union
    members called it a "slave labor bill", Truman
    vetoed it, both houses overrode it

American Society and Politics after the War
  • Throughout 1948 Truman proposed one reform
    measure after another (including on February 2
    the first major civil rights bill of the
    century), the Republican Congress ignored or
    defeated them all, but Truman was building issues
    for the fall campaign

American Society and Politics after the War
  • Truman was personally unpopular, the assumption
    among much of the electorate that he lacked
    stature, that his administration was weak and
    inept, and there were deep divisions among the
    Democratic Party

American Society and Politics after the War
  • The State's Rights Party (Dixiecrat) was composed
    of Southern conservatives at the Democratic
    Convention who reacted angrily to Truman's
    proposed civil rights bill, they nominated
    Governor Strom Thurmond (SC) as presidential

American Society and Politics after the War
  • The Democrats left wing formed a new Progressive
    Party with Henry Wallace as its candidate,
    objected to slow and ineffective domestic
    policies of Truman administration and Trumans
    confrontational stance towards the Soviet Union.

American Society and Politics after the War
  • The Americans for Democratic Action (ADA), a
    coalition of liberals, tried to entice Eisenhower
    to contest the nomination, only after Eisenhower
    refused did the Democrats nominate Truman for a
    second term

American Society and Politics after the War
  • Republicans nominated Thomas Dewey who
    substantial reelection as governor of New York
    made him a leading political figure, he was
    austere, dignified, and competent, he seemed an
    unbeatable alternative to Truman, Dewey ran a
    subdued, statesmanlike campaign and tried to
    avoid antagonizing anyone

American Society and Politics after the War
  • The Truman campaign traveled more than 32,000
    miles giving 356 speeches, he attacked the
    do-nothing, good-for-nothing Republican
    Congress, he called Congress into special session
    in July, 1948 to give them the opportunity to
    enact the liberal measures they had recently
    written into their platform, the Congress met for
    two weeks and did almost nothing.

American Society and Politics after the War
  • He campaigned for the repeal of the Taft-Hartley
    Act, increased price supports for farmers, strong
    civil rights protection for blacks (he was the
    first president to campaign in Harlem), Truman
    won a narrow but decisive victory in the 1948
    election 49.5 (303) to 45.1 (189), and the
    Democrats regained both houses of congress by
    substantial margins.

Election of 1948
American Society and Politics after the War
  • The 81st Congress raised minimum wage to 75
    cents, expanded Social Security by increasing
    benefits by 75 and extending them to 10 million
    additional people, it passed the National Housing
    Act of 1949 which provided for the construction
    of 810,000 units of low income housing
    accompanied by long term rent subsidies.

American Society and Politics after the War
  • Truman was not able to persuade Congress to
    accept the civil rights legislation proposed in
    1949 that would have made lynching a federal
    crime, provided federal protection of black
    voting rights, abolished the poll tax and
    established a new Federal Employment Practices
    Commission, southern Democrats filibustered to
    kill the bill

American Society and Politics after the War
  • Truman ordered an end to the discrimination in
    the hiring of government employees, he began to
    dismantle segregation in the armed forces, and he
    allowed the Justice Department to become actively
    involved in court battles against discriminatory
    statutes, Shelley v. Kraemer (1948) ruled that
    the courts could not be used to enforce private
    "covenants" meant to bar blacks from residential

American Society and Politics after the War
  • Postwar culture was torn between dark image of
    the nuclear war that many Americans feared would
    be a result of the rivalry with the Soviet Union,
    and the bright image of a dazzling technological
    future that atomic power might help to produce.

American Society and Politics after the War
  • Film Noir movies portrayed the loneliness of
    individuals in an impersonal world, the menacing
    character of the age, and the looming possibility
    of vast destruction, The Twilight Zone was a
    celebrated television show of the 1950s and 1960s
    that frequently featured the aftermath of nuclear

American Society and Politics after the War
  • Schools and office buildings had regular air raid
    drills to prepare for possibility of nuclear
    attack, radio stations frequently tested the
    emergency broadcast network which listeners
    understood to be in readiness for war, fallout
    shelters sprang up in public buildings and
    private homes, stocked with water and canned
    goods, to protect citizens in case of war

American Society and Politics after the War
  • Americans predicted that the secret of the atom
    would bring prosperity and a more complete life
    that it would create an era of unparalleled
    richness and opportunity for all, it would be
    the gateway to a new world and would set man
    on the road to the millennium, 2/3 of
    respondents in a 1948 Gallup poll believed that
    in the long run atomic energy would do more
    good than harm, Nuclear power plants began to
    spring up in many areas of the country welcomed
    as the source of cheap and unlimited electricity

The Korean War
  • Korea was divided along the 38th parallel between
    the Russian army and the US army after WWII, the
    Russians left after putting in place a communist
    regime supported by a strong Soviet equipped army
    and the US left the southern half under the
    anti-Communist government of Syngman Rhee with a
    small military that Rhee used primarily to
    suppress internal opposition, on June 24, 1950
    the armies of North Korea poured over its
    southern border invading South Korea, within days
    they had occupied much of South Korea

The Korean War 1950-1953
The Korean War
  • Truman's Response to the invasion on June 27,
    1950 ordered limited American military
    assistance to South Korea, appealed to the United
    Nations to intervene, Douglas MacArthur would
    command the UN operations there - effort not
    simply at containment but at liberation

The Korean War
  • Intervention in Korea was the first expression of
    the newly expansive American foreign policy
    outlined in NSC-68, UN aimed to create a
    unified, independent and democratic Korea, for
    several weeks the invasion went smoothly, UN
    forces captured Pyongyang and victory seemed
    close until the communist government in China

The Korean War
  • The UN offensive stalled and then collapsed,
    American forces fought a bitter, losing battle
    against the Chinese division retreating at almost
    every juncture, the war degenerated into a
    protracted stalemate

The Korean War
  • From the start Truman was determined to avoid a
    direct conflict with China, which he feared might
    led to new world war, once China entered the war
    he began seeking a negotiated solution to the

The Korean War
  • MacArthur who thought that the US should attack
    China itself, expressed his displeasure with
    Truman in a public letter to House Republican
    leader Joseph Martin that concluded There is no
    substitute for victory, this came when Truman
    was already angry with MacArthur for resisting
    his commands.

The Korean War
  • On April 11, 1951 Truman relieved MacArthur of
    his command, 69 of the American public supported
    MacArthur, Old soldiers never die, they just
    fade away, negotiations between the opposing
    forces dragged on until 1953

The Korean War
  • Office of Defense Mobilization was instituted to
    fight inflation by holding down prices and
    discouraging high union wage demands, railroad
    workers walked off the job in 1952, Truman
    ordered the government to seize control of the
    railroads, a nationwide steel strike followed in
    1952 and Truman seized the steel mills as well

The Korean War
  • The Supreme Court ruled 6 3 that the president
    had exceeded his authority when he seized control
    of the steel mills and Truman was forced to

The Korean War
  • The Korean War gave a significant boost to
    economic growth by pumping new government funds
    into the economy at a point when many believed a
    recession would began

The Korean War
  • Many began to think there was something deeply
    wrong not only in North Korea but the US as well
    since the US seemed unable to conclude what many
    Americans thought as a minor border skirmish in a
    small country.

Crusade Against Subversion
  • Communism was not an imagined enemy in the 1950s,
    it had a tangible shape in Joseph Stalin and the
    Soviet Union, America had suffered setbacks in
    its battle against communism, the Korean War
    stalemate, the loss of China, and the Soviet
    development of the atomic bomb, many Americans
    were looking for someone to blame and many
    Americans were attracted to the idea of a
    communist conspiracy within American borders

The Crusade Against Subversion
  • House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC)
    held a widely publicized investigation to prove
    that, under Democratic rule, the government had
    tolerated communist subversion, they argued
    communists had infiltrated Hollywood and tainted
    America with propaganda.

The Crusade Against Subversion
  • Writers and producers were called to testify and
    when some of them (the Hollywood Ten) refused to
    answer questions about their own political
    beliefs and those of their colleagues they were
    jailed for contempt, others were barred from
    employment in the industry when Hollywood adopted
    a blacklist of those of suspicious loyalty

The Crusade Against Subversion
  • In 1948, Wittaker Chambers, a self-avowed former
    communist agent, turned against the party and
    became the editor of Times magazine, told
    committee that Alger Hiss had passed classified
    State Department documents through him to the
    Soviet Union in 1937 and 1938, Hiss sued Chambers
    for slander and Chambers produced microfilms of
    the papers (the pumpkin papers).

The Crusade Against Subversion
  • Hiss could not be tried for espionage due to the
    statute of limitations, but with the relentless
    effort of Richard Nixon, a Republican congressman
    and a member of HUAC, Hiss was convicted of
    perjury and served several years in prison, this
    episode cast suspicion on a generation of liberal
    Democrats and the possible infiltration of the

The Crusade Against Subversion
  • In 1947, Democrats initiated a widely publicized
    program to review the "loyalty" of federal
    employees, by 1951 more than 2,000 government
    employees had resigned under pressure and 212 had
    been dismissed, the director of the Federal
    Bureau of Investigation (J. Edgar Hoover)
    investigated and harassed alleged radicals.

The Crusade Against Slavery
  • Congress passed the McCarran Internal Security
    Act in 1950 which required all communist
    organizations to register with the government,
    publish their records, and creating other
    restrictions on subversive activity, Truman
    vetoed it, and Congress easily overrode the veto

The Crusade Against Subversion
  • The Soviet detonation of a nuclear weapon in
    1949, earlier than most expected, convinced
    people that there had been a conspiracy to pass
    American atomic secrets to the Soviets, in 1950
    Klaus Fuchs seemed to confirm those fears when he
    testified that he had delivered to the Soviets
    details of the manufacture of the bomb.

The Crusade Against Subversion
  • Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, members of the
    Communist Party, the government claimed they had
    been the masterminds of the conspiracy to
    transport details of the atom bomb to the Soviet
    Union, they were convicted on April 5, 1951 and
    sentenced to death and executed in the electric
    chair on June 19, 1953

The Crusade Against Subversion
  • State and local governments, the judiciary,
    schools and universities, labor unions, all
    sought to purge themselves of real or imagined
    subversives, a pervasive fear of not only of
    communist infiltration but also the fear of being
    suspected of communism settled on the country

The Crusade Against Subversion
  • Joseph McCarthy made accusations of 205 known
    communists within the State Department, became
    the nations most prominent leader of the crusade
    against domestic subversion, conducted highly
    publicized investigations, but never produced
    solid evidence that any federal employee had
    communist ties, Republicans rallied to his claims
    that the Democrats had been responsible for
    twenty years of treason and that only a change
    of parties could rid the country of subversion

The Crusade Against Subversion
  • In the election of 1952 Democrats united behind
    Governor Adlai E. Stevenson (IL), while the
    Republicans nominated Dwight D. Eisenhower who
    chose Richard Nixon as his running mate, both
    made effective use of allegations of corruption
    in the Truman administration and pledged to clean
    up the mess in Washington, Eisenhower won and the
    Republicans gained control of both houses of